Porcelain veneers continue to climb the charts for popular cosmetic dental treatments. They are known for their ability to address a wide range of aesthetic flaws and give patients an instant smile makeover. If you weren’t lucky enough to be born with a Hollywood smile, porcelain veneers can likely give it to you.
Veneers do require a minor alteration to your existing tooth structure. Therefore, they are considered an irreversible procedure. For most, however, this procedure is life-changing. Here are some Frequently Asked Questions surrounding porcelain veneers so that you can determine if this cosmetic investment is right for you.
- What Are Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain veneers are wafer thin slices of porcelain that are customized and bonded to the front surfaces of your teeth. As your dentist, we can alter the size, length, shape and color of your veneers to reflect your ideal smile. In most cases, veneers are placed in multiples, typically on the front 2 to 8 teeth. However, just one veneer can be used if necessary.
- Who Is A Good Candidate For Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain veneers are made to look natural. They can correct a full menu of cosmetic concerns, ranging from mildly crooked teeth and gapped teeth to chipped teeth and discolored teeth. If you hide your mouth when you laugh because you feel your smile is unbalanced or unattractive, porcelain veneers can likely help.
- Who Is NOT A Good Candidate For Veneers?
Veneers should not be placed on patients that have existing decay, gum disease or severe misalignment. In addition, those that have a teeth grinding habit (bruxism) should avoid porcelain veneers due to the potential damage that could occur. If you only grind your teeth at night, a custom mouth guard can be considered to protect your veneers.
- What Happens During The Procedure?
The veneers process begins with a careful evaluation from Dr. Gilreath. This will include a discussion of your ideal goals as well as precise measurements of your teeth and bite. Your actual procedure will require that a tiny amount of your tooth structure be shaved off. This is to encourage the veneer to bond more securely. You will be given local anesthesia to eliminate discomfort. Once your teeth are prepared for veneers, an impression will be taken of your teeth so that your veneers can be custom fabricated to fit your smile.
Once your veneers are ready, you will return for a second appointment to place the veneers. This is when Dr. Gilreath will check the size, color and shape of each veneer and bond them securely in place to create your new dazzling smile.
- How Do I Care For My Porcelain Veneers?
Routine dental checkups and oral care at home should continue as normal. You will need to pay close attention to cleaning the area around your veneers so that decay and gum disease are prevented. Remember that although the veneer itself is stain-resistant and decay-resistant, your surrounding tissues and underlying tooth is still vulnerable. In addition, it is strongly encouraged that patients avoid harmful dental habits such as chomping ice, nail biting or tearing open packages with their teeth. Your veneers are strong, but they are not intended for use beyond normal chewing functions.
- How Long Do Porcelain Veneers Last?
The longevity of porcelain veneers varies from patient to patient. Typically, patients get about 10 to 15 years out of their veneers. If one of your veneers were to chip or crack, it can be easily replaced.
- Are Porcelain Veneers Covered By My Dental Insurance?
Cosmetic dental procedures such as veneers are typically not covered under dental insurance. However, many offices have flexible financing plans to help you afford this invaluable smile enhancement. A beautiful, confident smile is priceless!
Posted on behalf of Dr. Paul Gilreath IV,